Health Reasons: Why the Twins Will Win the AL Central

Justin Morneau is back from his post-concussion symptoms. Joe Nathan is fully recovered from his ailments that he suffered last season. In the UFC, Joe Rogan and other commentators often speak of “ring rust” when describing fighters who are returning to competition after long layoffs. The Twins brass hope this ring rust was remedied with spring training.

The American League Central may be the only division in baseball with three truly viable contenders for the division crown. The Cleveland Indians and Kansas City Royals still remain afterthoughts-much to the chagrin to their respective fan bases. The latter is trying to create a buzz that they will be contenders in a couple of years simply to placate the masses.  The cases of Mark Prior and Todd Van Poppel are proof positive that prospects don’t always come to fruition. Even if they do pan out, the players will inevitably bolt to bigger markets that are willing to open their wallets for long term deals. Their payroll is only slightly higher than Alex Rodriguez’s salary for the upcoming season.

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Who is the Minnesota Twins Postseason Closer?

The Minnesota Twins starting rotation has had a very successful season. They’re the primary reason the team has qualified for the playoffs and hope to solidify home field advantage during this final week of the season.  Francisco Liriano, Scott Baker, Brian Duensing, Kevin Slowey, Carl Pavano, and Nick Blackburn have all achieved at least ten wins this season. This demonstrates incredible balance and consistency that is rarely seen around the big leagues.

Pavano is the clear leader in innings pitched and in the win column, but he is not an ace in the same sphere as a C.C. Sabathia or David Price. This could prove to be a concern in a short first round playoff series. Fans may recall the impact that Sabathia had when the Brewers used him continuously in their postseason run a few years ago.

By Patrick Herbert

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Efficiency or Lack of Freedom in the Twins Rotation?

nick blackburn

Kevin Slowey, Nick Blackburn, and Scott Baker are all products of the Minnesota Twins’ farm system. The trio of mid-to-late 20 year old right-handed hurlers all have an efficiency of motion. This isn’t the first time the team’s fans have seen a similar style. Brad Radke was the organization’s molding of Greg Maddux-a poor man’s version mind you. Rick Anderson has been a stalwart pitching coach during the Gardenhire era. It has undoubtedly been a successful tenure during the regular season, but there have been many disappointments in the playoffs.

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